Episode 3 – Barcelona – A City You Can Fall in Love With (II)
If you are a shopping person, you will love Barcelona. The prices of goods in Barcelona are by far the least expensive in Spain. Madrid is very advance in style, Toledo is intrigue in its workmanship, but Barcelona has the best combination of everything.
Take L3 – the blue line in Metro and get off at Passiag de Garcia. It is a boulevard spotted by brand name stores. It is also a short distance away from one of the Gaudi houses. There are also a lot of mid-range price stores along the way. Their merchandises are stylish enough to stand the test of time. The colours are fresh and vibrant and yet the prices are often 20% less when compared with other cities. You walk and you get tired. There are lots and lots of roadside cafés that can quench your desires. You can have wine, sangria, beer, ice-cream, at the cafés, sit and watch the lovely Spanish girls walk by with their cheerful laughter. You can also watch the intensity of tourists with maps searching for their destinations with the little time they can afford.
If you are determined enough, keep going south and soon you will reach the beach area. It is right by the Atlantic Ocean. The beach was not the best but the young crowd loves it. It is a typical beach scene with sun, sand, umbrella, BBQs, beer halls, volley ball games. We can see at the far beyond shadows of ocean liners approaching. They will bring in more disciples to this wonderful Mecca to fall in love again. It was a day the Spanish soccer team won a soccer match. There was celebration in the streets. You can see people, young and old, male and female, drunk or sober, dancing in the street to the music of a brass band. Banners were waving, everybody was shouting, yelling, whistling, and we got lost in this cheerful energy pool.
It was time for dinner and we picked a roadside place and asked for an English menu. The wine was too young for my taste but for the first time I tasted black paella. It is paella made with octopus ink. The appearance of the dish was unusual. The whole dish was tainted by the colour of the ink. To make it more interesting, do take a look in a mirror after the dish and you will see your lips lined with black shadows. May be that is the new fashion coming. Definitely it is an acquired taste. The Spanish people prefer sea bream which is a white fish with 1 center bone. The taste is not that extraordinary. The flesh has a very soft texture. I do not think they can win any Michelin star with this.
The next street over from La Rambla, hidden behind a bank is the Music Hall. This used to be an old church that was destroyed by fire, and then the town’s people decided to keep this auditorium in the middle of town. The most famous piece in the hall is the chandelier representing a fire from the Sun. it led to a skylight which allow the sunlight in and emphasize on the grandeur of the ornament.The sculpture of the muses on the stage is a definite promotion of female power with its ever-so-loving muses. There are stain glass windows surrounding the whole building. Since this music hall is designed for the people, the cost for running this establishment is not high. A lot of voluntary work was involved. The music hall is so busy that it has engagement every single night of the year. Sometimes matinees are demanded. It is such an intimate venue and a lot of artists prefer this to the grand auditoriums
In the middle of the waiting area is a café. There were no seats. People just crowded around it standing and sipping their expresso. There was a display of desserts, pastry and sweet goods. They looked tempting and the taste was superb. For you music lovers, this is a perfect way to spend your evening. A swirling melody, a secret holding of hands, an inviting rubbing of shoulders, you can get yourselves soaked up in the mellow romance of sipping coffee under the soft light from the stain windows.
We still need energy to explore to-morrow.